This fun game offers a simple introduction to the solar system, through the accounts of CosmoBally. It is a Ballyland Story Game app from Sonokids’ award-winning Ballyland suite of gamified educational apps. CosmoBally is an astronaut, and the first Ballylander to fly in space. Responding to touch with audio feedback, the story is presented both visually as well as through real human voices, audio effects, and songs. This makes the app engaging and fun for all children, including those who are blind or visually impaired.
FIRST: Move through the story and listen to CosmoBally sharing her experiences in space with the resident Ballylanders in Ballyland. What do they need to do in the radio tower? Can you breathe in fresh air out there in space? Which planet is the hottest? What happens if there is a solar flare?! Explaining how the features and looks of some planets remind her of her friends in Ballyland, CosmoBally presents important snippets of information about the Sun, the Moon and the 8 planets in a subtle way. The story pages use ‘touch’ and ‘flick left’ for independent use by young children.
THEN (optional): Play the Bonus audio game. Find planets in a specific order along five routes to score points and connect to CosmoBally. The Bonus game uses ‘finger drag’ and ‘touch and hold’.
• Engaging interactive audio story with high quality audio (narration, sound effects and song)
• No reading skills required
• Built-in speech
• Simple images and animations in bright colors and clear contrast
• Easy to navigate when/if hand functions are limited
• Suitable for children who are blind or visually impaired (no accessibility skills required)
*Note for parents and teachers of students who are blind: Full instructions for accessibility and tips on how to do the finger drag can be found in the app’s description on the Sonokids dot org website.
• In the story, Zoom can be enabled
• Facts about space and Solar System
• Cause & Effect game
• Finger drag skills, touch screen interaction and spatial awareness by students who are blind
• Bonus Game and end Song reinforce the order of the planets from the Sun (lyrics on Sonokids dot org website).
“The story itself, though based on the solar system, gives scope for teachers and learners to expand beyond this: PSHE theme of friendship, feelings (they miss CosmoBally), Science (air to breathe, telecommunication), Art and Design (organize a cosmic fashion show, build a transport that can be raced against Wheelie and use different terrains from the planet), the importance of turn taking and not being grumpy for being last, and the list goes on…”
Specialist Teacher Vision Impairment